Are You Serving Slop In the Pulpit?

I was talking to a fellow preacher the other day about the difficulties and challenges of preaching sermons that both touch the people as well as sits under the smile of God. We talked about the inclination today to resort to tactics and tricks to manufacture a connection to the congregation that is neither real nor helpful.

Preaching Under the Frown of God
I heard a preacher the other day who obviously did not put in the hard work of thinking theologically about the lives that his people were living. In addition, the strong scriptural foundation was missing as well. That preacher preached a sermon that did not touch the people. Then while noticing his floundering he simply started whooping. The people start shouting, yes, but where they equipped to handle any real engagement with the world or helped in their struggle within it. This kind of preaching is useless.

When people in the congregation have a difficult week, do they have the message that God intended them to have to help them through their struggle when we don’t do our diligent work as preachers. When Grandma dies did we deny them the spiritual nourishment from the pulpit that God could have used to aid them through that struggle because of our sloth in preparation? Even though the people may shout through weak attempts to placate the congregation, God frowns on those efforts.

Are Your Sermons Insulting God?
You may get speaking engagements. you may get the call to pastor the church. But eventually it will catch up with you. Yelling, whooping, and “celebrating” at the end of a WEAK sermon is like sprinkling sugar over some dung and serving it to your spouse on your 50th wedding anniversary. It is worse than inappropriate, it is insulting to the people and your God.

Preaching is hard work, and God is there to help us at every step of the way. Certainly you will not always hit a “home run,” but don’t don’t serve the people warmed over slop, tack a whoop at the end, and then relish in the misguided approbations of humanity. The people may shout, but your aren’t fooling God, and you aren’t helping your people when you serve slop in the pulpit.

Comments

comments

Sherman Haywood Cox II is the director of Soul Preaching. He holds the M.Div with an emphasis in Homiletics and a M.S. in Computer Science.

Posted in blog, Preaching
7 comments on “Are You Serving Slop In the Pulpit?
  1. Ben Nelson says:

    Mr Cox – this is an excellent question. When a preacher begins to look at his ministry as a job where he has to prepare a ‘speech’ every week, nothing good can come from it.

    It is even worse to stir up emotion using techniques – God have mercy!

    The only reason to stand in the pulpit is if you have something from the store house of heaven with which to feed the sheep, and prepare them for life in the real world.

    thank you brother – good word.

  2. Ben Nelson says:

    Frankly – i need to hear this about making blog posts as well.

  3. J. terry says:

    Excellent work; great information for all of us that strive to close strong. Sometimes we actually are closing weak if the sermon contents prior to the whoop is weak.

  4. Sherman Haywood Cox II says:

    ouch…Pastor Nelson…lol

  5. I’m reminded of the prodigal son, after he spent all his substance on harlots, found himself in the pig pin surrounded by slop. As a Jewish boy that in and of itself was insulting, but God used that experience to bring him to his senses. Thank God that when the Word of God goes out, it does not return void, for it always accomplishes that for which it was sent out. So don’t worry about preaching slop, just make sure that you are preaching the Truth. Jesus said in John 17:17 Sanctify them by thy Truth.
    The Word of God is the Truth, that will make men, and women holy. So preach the Word, and be instant in season, as well as out of season.

  6. TIMMY188 says:

    Thank the Lord for these words of encouragement, as we celebrate Resurrection Sunday. May the Lord bless all those who stand in the pulpit to serve a full coarse meal.

  7. Timely words! “Whooping” is not practiced in my tradition, but I have seen other “gap-fillers”–“Amen?” “Can I get an amen?” or something like that. There is nothing like a good solid meal from the Scriptures served with hot, Holy Spirit-inspired enthusiasm.

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